A proud heritage of design and innovation going back over 100 years
2011 saw the practice celebrate its centenary anniversary. This timeline illustrates the impact that our work has had on the built environment of Scotland and beyond, and the strength of our experience in designing for Healthcare, Education, Sciences, Residential, Civic and Commercial projects.
over 100 years of architecture
The company was founded as George A. Boswell Architects in Glasgow in 1911 by George Arthur Boswell. Initially the practice specialised in specialist cinema and theatre architecture for Scotland’s booming entertainment industry in the days before television.
Throughout the 1920s and 30s, the practice worked primarily in industrial and commercial architecture in Glasgow and the West of Scotland, but also undertook commissions for a number of substantial private residences.
Notable projects at this time included two extensions to Glasgow’s world renown Templeton’s Carpet Factory. A second office was opened in Wolverhampton in 1932, which remained open until the mid 1950’s.
Ninian Johnston & Peter Mitchell joined as partners in the 1940s and the practice became known as George A. Boswell & Partners.
Post WWII, Scotland was faced with a major housing shortage and the practice was commissioned to master-plan and design several large housing developments in Glasgow and Dunbartonshire.
Following George Boswell’s death in 1952 the practice became known as Boswell, Mitchell & Johnston.
The Post–War boom of the 1950’s and early 60s, saw the practice design many primary and secondary schools. Several landmark projects were completed during this period including Dunoon Concert Hall & Pavilion and a major new commercial hub for IBM in Greenock.
In 1963 the practice developed one of Glasgow’s largest new housing developments in Pollokshaws, which included the tallest prefabricated building in Europe.
The practice completed its first laboratory project, James Anderson & Co. Laboratories, in 1964.
Throughout the 1970s the practice continued to expand its portfolio in housing, education and commercial architecture. In 1973 Glasgow’s iconic Woodlands housing development was completed. The company also undertook major healthcare projects. Dumfries & Galloway Royal Infirmary was completed in 1975, the first of many large healthcare projects for the practice.
During the 1980s, the practice further established its credentials in healthcare and education projects, completing a 3rd major district general hospital – St John’s, Livingston, and new projects for Strathallan School, Hutchesons Grammar and The Glasgow Academy. The practice also undertook a major commission for a new bridge across the Clyde for The Glasgow Garden Festival. Bells Bridge, as it became known, was built by Sir William Arrol and Company and was completed in 1989
The 1990s were a period of growth, with major sciences projects for the Universities of Glasgow, St. Andrews, Edinburgh and Dundee. In education, the practice completed new buildings for RSAMD, Ayr College and Balfron High School.
BMJ’s London office opened in 2000 followed a couple of years later by new offices in Belfast and Aberdeen.
The Glasgow and London offices continued to thrive during the first decade of the new millennium, working for many new clients including 12 of the Russell Group of Universities and several large NHS Healthcare Trusts in Scotland and England. In 2011 the practice celebrated its centenary at the Festival Hall in London and with a civic reception given by Glasgow City Council at the City Chambers.
Today, the practice continues to build on its heritage of design excellence with exciting and innovative projects such as ICE (Imaging Centre of Excellence) in Glasgow and the Royal National Ear Nose and Throat and Eastman Dental Hospitals in London